The Society for Immunotherapy of Cancer Highlights Immunotherapy on Melanoma Monday

May 7
, 2018

MILWAUKEE – The Society for Immunotherapy of Cancer (SITC) recognizes “Melanoma Monday” on May 7, 2018, to highlight the advances and success of immunotherapy to treat patients with melanoma.

Melanoma Monday was started by the American Academy of Dermatology in 1994 to raise awareness for skin cancer during May, long recognized as Skin Cancer Awareness Month. SITC, a leading organization dedicated to improving cancer patient outcomes by advancing the science and application of cancer immunotherapy, honors the day to raise awareness of the innovative immunotherapy options available to treat melanoma.

“Among the treatment options for melanoma, including surgery, chemotherapy, radiation therapy and immunotherapy, melanoma is one of the most responsive cancers to immunotherapy treatment, which brings new hope to people with the disease,” said SITC Immediate Past President Howard L. Kaufman, MD, FACS. “For many people with melanoma, immunotherapy is successful in terms of shrinking tumors, reducing the risk of relapse, and leading to a longer life.”

SITC Policy and Advocacy Manager Jacqueline Smith has a personal connection to this month. Originally diagnosed with Stage III melanoma in 2002, Smith overcame the disease and subsequent recurrences through participation in an early clinical trial using the treatment pegylated interferon (PEG-Intron).

“It’s been 16 years since my initial diagnosis, and not only has the state of cancer immunotherapy research progressed significantly, but access to informative and educational online resources for patients has improved dramatically thanks to organizations like the Society for Immunotherapy of Cancer,” Smith said.

SITC provides a variety of informative, free online resources to educate patients, clinicians, and researchers about immunotherapy, including:

  • For patients: Immunotherapy for the Treatment of Melanoma Patient Resource Guide: Developed specifically for patients with melanoma and their caregivers, these online resources, originally published in the Patient Resource Guide: Immunotherapy for the Treatment of Melanoma, outline immunotherapy options for melanoma, the role of the immune system in cancer treatment and what to expect during treatment.
  • For clinicians: Immunotherapy for the Treatment of Melanoma: This class, developed specifically for clinicians, covers clinical data on the efficacy of approved therapies, the mechanism of action of approved therapies, patient selection for approved therapies, and dosing and sequencing of approved therapies for the treatment of melanoma. The class also includes case studies on immunotherapy for the treatment of melanoma.
  • For researchers: Melanoma: Challenges and Opportunities and the Need for Rational Combinations of Agents: Shared with an audience of researchers, this presentation highlights the success found in treating melanoma through a combination of agents. Melanoma is commonly treated through a single immunotherapy drug, however, as the field continues to progress, researchers are working to try more combinations in an effort to treat more patients.

For more information, visit the SITC website at

About SITC

Established in 1984, the Society for Immunotherapy of Cancer (SITC) is a nonprofit organization of medical professionals dedicated to improving cancer patient outcomes by advancing the development, science and application of cancer immunotherapy and tumor immunology. SITC is comprised of influential basic and translational scientists, practitioners, health care professionals, government leaders and industry professionals around the globe. Through educational initiatives that foster scientific exchange and collaboration among leaders in the field, SITC aims to one day make the word “cure” a reality for cancer patients everywhere. Learn more about SITC, our educational offerings and other resources at and follow us on Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook and YouTube.



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